A Love Artwork in a Family Portrait

in #art5 years ago

"Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing."
-Jim Rohn


Here's another portrait defining love in every moment, a family portrait.

It is a commissioned artwork intended to be gifted as a birthday present to the family in the picture.

"Ito yung unang family picture nila at gusto ko ito yung ipadrawing sayo para sa birthday nya"(This is their first family picture and I want this to be drawn for his birthday from me), said by my friend.

Upon seeing the picture, I felt the warm hug given by the mother and a joyful feeling by both of the child's parents. And this gave me excitement to make this commission. I immediately bought a large picture frame and paper board for this one.

Portrait of a True Love is the first love-series portrait I did for my boss. Here's a sneak peak:


  • 5B Drawing Pencil
  • 2B Drawing Pencil
  • Eraser
  • Bristol Board
  • Picture Frame

Work in Progress


Like most of my drawing process, I started with collecting and preparing all the materials needed. They gave me two reference which I needed to stitch together in order to get the best position they have. After that I edited the picture into a black and white copy so that I can easily distinguish the light and shadows and the shades of the reference.

Using 2B Pencil, I drew the outline of the family with a very light touch. This is to be able to smudge or erase the lines easily.


I started to shade on the mother's picture first, since it is also in the leftmost part. I always start on the leftmost part when I'm making big artworks since I am righthanded. This could avoid smudging on the undesirable parts on the paper.

source This is also called as Silver Surfer Syndrome and is commonly noticeable among left handed people, but some right-handed persons also experience this kind of smearing especially when using graphite and charcoal.

The best way to avoid smearing is to use a piece of clean paper towel or paper in between y our drawing hand and paper. You can also use acetate film so you could see what's beneath your hand.



Hair is one of the biggest challenge and struggle for me. It needed patience and skills in order to draw a near realistic hair lines and strands, an intricate way of shading and using pointed pencils.


In this video (time lapse), I showed I cover each parts with graphite. It is important to know where does the light shine upon on your subject. See the difference between each section and shade your drawing accordingly. You don't have to use your pencil hard on the paper to give a dark color, this may affect the texture of the paper and cause uneven surface and unwanted lines. But, you can always shade on each shaded areas to make it more darker. Leave the lightest parts unshaded as much as possible.


After the first steps, I proceeded on adding some details on the drawing. I used a pointed / sharpened 5B drawing pencil to define the eyes, nose lines, ears, lips, hair and every part that needs to be bold at first glance.


I added some shadow part on the portrait to make it look fuller.


The frame i got is 16"x20" so I had to cut the excess edges of the board.

Tip: Make sure that you clean the glass and other parts of the frame thoroughly. You can use a cotton towel or tissue with alcohol. Also, make sure that it is dry before putting your artwork.


PS: I think I am coming back to black and white portraits, I am loving the simplicity and the classic feels it gives to my eyes.

Thanks for dropping by. Have a nice day everyone !!!


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